the magic carpet

one of the things wilde had waiting for them when they returned to second life was a new magic carpet that takes the rider all over the island and then returns to its home base.  below are some pix we took that they said they 'd like up here. 

flying past the front of charlenes treasure laiden home

flying past the primary kiosk.  people come and check this out every day~ 
wildes writings live in these crystal gardens.  you touch a dispensor and out comes a writing!


flying past the tv that flashes pictures of wilde having fun in sl.  this pix here is of their baseball hall of fame which can be found on the island.

another new part of the island is a small park over by starfish beach.  it hosts partical trees and faeries

cruising through what john s calls his sensory room.  its a dark underwater area with wonderful visual effects


a glimpse of human rights peak which hosts a flower garden dedicated to micah's mom.
below human rights peak is a grove of trees where the animals love to play

coming in for landing as we cross over the freebie area

Posted by group mascot on June 8, 2005 at 07:24 AM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

can you know??

can you know the difference your comments make as they are read so many times??  as they are bathed in??  i wish you could!

all are lil
all are big
together we are strong~

Posted by group mascot on March 30, 2005 at 08:52 PM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

some of my favorite writings in this blog


johns writing about second life and what it means to him, and why~

johns writing on the big challenge of his life

a group writing on the love of one, anyone

a group poem on everyone being the same

marys poem on being trapped

scotts poem about his mother

a group poem called independent dependency

an early group writing on what they like about sl and why

a poem by me about the group and this time

a writing on communication with non verbal people

johns write up on a familiar communication experience

john lesters plaque dedication

a poem about things wilde teaches me

and lastly our mission

what are some of your favorite writings?

is there something you are curious about that you'd like to hear more on?

Posted by group mascot on March 20, 2005 at 06:02 PM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

copy of an artical from a sl magazine

the below is a copy of an artical i was asked to write for a second life in world magazine.  the group asked me to post it, so here it is~

the one soul of wilde cunningham
by lilone sandgrain

wilde cunningham is a relatively new av to sl, they've only been playing actively since november.  wilde is an extraordinarily unique av for 3 reasons:

1) wilde is played by up to 9 individuals at a time all playing as a group.
2) wilde is comprised of adults in their 20's-70's all with severe disabilities which do not allow them what we would call normal lives.
3) due to these disabilities they do not drive the av themselves but instruct me, their personal mascot and servant girl, on what they want to do, say, build etc.  i am their hands and voice.  or more accurately, their interpreter.

in rl i work with wilde at a day program for adults where i've worked a lil over 3 years.  i've found them to be some of the truest friends of my entire life and accordingly they have my utmost respect, loyality and love. 

while we have 9 regular people who play wilde there are often guest players who join in or watch them sharing their inworld play.  of these 9 people 3 have been diagnosed with a degree of mental retardation, 6 are in wheel chairs, 2 of these have such disabling conditions they are in manual chairs which they can not move, 6 have cerebral palsy or cp, 5 have very severe speech impediments, 2 of those are limited to one or two word replies, another in the group can not speak at all, these 6 with cp can not use their hands, all nine have golden rich hearts with much to share with the world, all 9 of them teach me daily and impart wisdom to me i would not have gained any other way. 

on playing as a group~ 
many residents have wondered how one av can be shared with so many people.  group dynamics can often be so challenging.  everyone soul has its particular strengths and weaknesses, i can say one of wildes strengths is operating as a group.  heres a bit on how we do it.   within the group that i'm entrusted with we have certain ground rules.  they follow us through the course of our day and into every activity which we find ourselves.  some of them are:

  • all have inherant value, accordingly we respect and welcome all.
  • each deserves equality in participation, contribution and communication, regardless of time factors involved.
  • all have something to contribute.  if they chose not to contribute sometimes, thats respected too.
  • all have weaknesses.  we do not focus on anyones weakness
  • if we want our feelings respected, it is our duty to respect our peers even if it differs from ours, the same as if it was ours, in other words our neighbor's problems and input are just as valid as ours.
  • we are better as a team, when all parts contribute what they will and each looks out for the other.  we equal more as a whole than the individual parts added up twice over.

these values are integrated and fostered into all aspects of our lives in the day program, within my group.   its no wonder that they easily carry over into sl.  in rl we do tons of opinion polling and voting.  there are never wrong answers, and often people simply choose the wishes of their peer over their own.   greed kills.  wanting our peers equal success empowers us all.   within these ground rules wilde has blossomed into a very active and powerful voice.

we have offline group meetings regarding sl and the direction we want to go, progress we are making, appointments we'd like to make just about on a daily basis.   this helps bring unity to the group when we drive our lil av about and makes the most of our limited time to play.  they embody the dynamics of a perfectly running ideal group.  much of the world could take an example from them.

there has never been a playing time when we were torn or got upset with each other over what one wanted to do.  we also know that playing sl is a long term thing, and nothing needs to be rushed.  very rarely does one player feel the need to have it their own way, but should they feel that commited to something our group would defer to them in that instance, knowing the same will fall to them in turn.

we read all chat dialogs outloud.   often we play in 2 rows of chairs, occassionally 3.  in a busy area reading chat can be a bit challenging.  its not unusual in such busy areas that we listen more than speak.  for just the listening to so many parts can be tricky.   one to one, or in smaller groups wilde is more active conversationally.   

we follow this temperature checking policy, we all gaze about the room  listening for suggestions or approval of an idea kicked out, some responces are visual and not audio so we may often converse a wee bit slower at times.  however, WE DONT CARE!!  we are having the time of our life and being a part of a communty in ways we never dreamed we'd do!   in rl it would take folk 2-3x longer at least to understand what's being said.  in sl we miss all the draw backs of our speech impediments  and of people being intimidated by our physical appearances.  so while a listener may feel we are taking a bit longer to reply in reality we are cruising along at top notch speeds and loving it~

the experience of second life has brought about many changes in wilde which i would never have expected in the beginning.  i brought them to sl because it had offered so much to me and i figured they'd have a blast.  i'd long been telling them tales of adventures and saw how they ate up every last detail.  what i never anticipated was that once they were in they'd play not merely for the fun but from a sence of duty and mission.   almost as if by magic they were released to share the matters and experiences of their lives.  that was what they most wanted to do.

they began writing like maniacs  composing poems and essays on what its like to be disabled, and how all humanity is alike, regardless of precieved weaknesses, and on some of their deepest struggles.  what was more amazing to us all was how the community within sl began to eat these up and ask for more.   one thing lead to another and they had kiosks of notecards spreadout over the sl map.  the support and community reach out to them was almost more than they could keep up with.

one day during my private at home game play as lilone, i got an im from john prototype.  he'd come across our kiosk in bretton.  as it turned out he had been working for many years on a very simular project bringing people (patients and caregivers) into online environments wherein they could find a sence of community and grow from what each supplied.  he'd set up an island in sl called brigadoon where folks with aspergers (a milder form of autism) could do just that, live and grow together in a safe and friendly space.  having been allowed the privilege of meeting some of the brigadoon residents i can say what he's pioneered there is staggering and very beautiful.   interestingly enough is how i feel more safe there and have a greater sence of belonging than anywhere else in sl.  each resident of brigadoon, despite having to deal with misunderstandings about AS in rl, have embraced sl as a way to help each other help themselves and educate the public.

john and i spent some time inworld discussing wilde, what rl was like for them and how sl was radically empowering them.  since he was in the boston area, as we are, we invited him to spend some rl time with us.  i sieze the opportunity to bring caring folk into wildes rl experience.  john was more than well received.  barely over an hour into his visit with them they were asking repeatedly for him to return.  after he left they wouldnt let up on me to hound him for the same.  heh.  not that i needed to do that, for john too, felt the connection to wilde.   he has since been coming on a bi-weekly basis to share a few hours.  the group is estatic!

it was almost as if the universe had directed john and wilde together.  what they were doing was in sync with his overall mission.  he wanted to help in anyway he could.  he offered to set them up with a blog to take their inworld writings, and anything else they'd like to share, to the world at large.  in this way they could open up a new support network for others with simular extreme challenges or perhaps their caregivers or family members. 

he also offered to help with the purchase of an island for the same above purpose.  he offered to pay the initial set up fees and cover the land tier for the first few months till wilde could cover their own expenses.   his generosity stuned us.  even more stunning was the fact that he was willing to become a friend.  to lock arms and walk a spell with us.   its rare to find someone like minded.   i consider it a gift to find a partner and friend as trustworthy as he is. 

no one was sure at first how to digest all this, but we knew it was a good thing.  wilde wanted nothing more than to reach out and share, to make the world better for their peers and to let the whole planet know we were all the same.   we have this saying in our group, 'we are not our bodies, nor are we are weaknesses'.

the blog and the island have both been set up as of Jan 05.  while they are both in the early stages of development there is much anticipation for where the future will take us.   wilde wants others to come and experience the same triumphs and empowerment.  the sl enviornment offers a unique freedom for people with gross imparments that cant be found in the real world,  an equal playing field of sorts.

on the live2give island responisibilities have been divied up according to the individual interests within wilde.  2 are responsible for landscaping, 1 for a future market area, 1 for an underwater development, 1 for the notecard dispensing area, and 2 for island humor.  the others at this time dont want an area of responsibility, but prefer to watch and enjoy the process--  which is fully supported.  one doesnt have to have responsibility to make a difference, nor to be in the limelight to have equal importance or value.   what a blast they are having in realizing what they see in their minds eye.  we are keeping portions of the island open for those who will come in the future to have space.  a full set up of notecard dispensors has been placed near the welcome area for all to share.  its an open island all are welcome!

there are many areas sl has enhanced wilde cunningham.  there are many more ways yet ahead undiscovered. they are eager for the world, as newly released captives into a free world.  please take some time to visit their island  live2give  or read their blog at  i'd also strongly recommend checking out john's tremendous work at  or his brigadoon blog at     both of us welcome inworld im's or the chance to shine the spotlight on our exceptional group of friends.  until then, enjoy your second life~  be all you can be, all the many yous of you!  take a lesson from wilde, you are not your weaknesses.  each has something they can give!

Posted by group mascot on March 17, 2005 at 07:12 PM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

fun times

Upcoming_wedding_2_1baccara rhodes has been a dear friend to us.  here we are sneaking a dance in her wedding ball room a week before the wedding.  shhhh  just dont tell mash!

Chicken_heads_2moon, gywneth and ourselves wearing the chicken head which causes you to dance and cluck.  my how we laughed that day!
Kage_snow_ball_fightclobbering kage w/ snowballs from the snowball shooter. kage is our friend of fun~

hells gates.  they say its easy to go to hell. we had to work so hard to find it, laughing the whole time we did.  it can be quite hard to get to hell.  but once we finally did get in, we had a riot it was so much fun! 
another time out with kage.  poor him!  the mascot was the worst pilot in the world crashing and getting stuck in houses!  to top it off, baby ruby tossed her cookies all over kage!  wilde laughed for days on this adventure! 

Baby_ruby_gets_a_ride baby ruby pulling the monkeys tail.  bad baby ruby, bad!

sh sh sh shopping!!!  we got this wicked kewl light saber with sound effects.  then we stood in this dark hearted room declaring, " we are the new jedi's of love!"

Hamlet our meeting with hamlet for when he did the "9 souls of wilde cunningham" artical in the new world notes, at our first  kiosk in bretton.

john, tim guest, and wilde having our first inworld interview together.  later all of us met in rl.   soon many will hear our stories and know share our joy  how much better real life is for us having discovered second life!

up in our office trying make our 2 month switch back to male.  haha  as you can see there are always stages in change, even if you know where you are going!  we have soooo much fun with sl.  sl rocks~   bring it on!  lets change the world, even if in clunky stages.

Posted by group mascot on March 12, 2005 at 09:23 AM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

pix of the island

Welcome_area this is our welcome area.

Tropical_lifejohn s loves fish.  this is his coral reef  below the coral reef is a secret chamber filled with john's imaginative goodies.
this is the crystal garden notecard area.  wilde's most popular writings live here to be shared.
Human_rights_lookouthuman rights trail culminates at human rights peek.  here a new pix flashes to remind us all deserve equal good.

Mermaid_poolcharlenes mermaid pool.  she's designed it to be mostly moms with kids and has named each of them carefully.
here they ride john s's sea horse

our office in the sky where we can entertain
or im quietly

Wilde_wishing_star_beachwishing star beach.  the starfish contain special wishes

Water_swinghave you ever used a swing over water?  know what happens when you jump off?  splash!  you get to see the sea monkeys!

mmmmm  our island jacouzzi.  this lives in an underwater home built for a non wilde live2give island resident. 

our raft to dream upon floats in the bay.  there you'll also find baby moses floating in a basket with the question, 'what if no one had saved him?'
Tire_swing our tire swing while sails amidst birds and butterflies.

Our_drumsthe island drum circle.  click on a drum and play your cares away!  or if you feel more like dancing, click the drum in the center and dance to anothers beat!
drumming away the night, calling forth to usher in a new day

it was hard for baby ruby not to get sea sick as she sailed on our back around the island.  but at least the dolphins made her laugh!

Posted by group mascot on March 12, 2005 at 08:46 AM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

i hear them

i hear them
by the mascot

i see them now, i see them
all hoping for an ear
reaching out to all who'll come
to come ever  near

i hear them now, i hear them
expressing as never before
pushing and pressing and breaking down
every obstinent door

they are small in their own eyes
these keepers of my soul
feeling only weaknesses
they never feel quite whole.

they do not see their wisdom
which surpasses  you and i
they do not know their power
though its now begun to fly

while they dont speak as easy
and take time to understand
their words now echo far and wide
into distant lands

while in quiet times of composure
they leak out who they are
these humble times now hurl them
as though shooting stars

i see them now, i see them
speaking for the crowds
taking away the mysteries
ripping apart the shrouds

i hear them now, i hear them
as loudly as can be
not  a little one among them
and setting captives free

Posted by group mascot on February 21, 2005 at 06:06 AM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

on scott's poem,'in your cozy world'

this writing was composed in concept beginning about 5 weeks ago, when scott was feeling depressed.  i could see it and knew what it was, so we had our first of many discussions on what he was feeling.  as usual i would toss things out for him to comment on.  it was very heavy, not the most pleasant for either of us.  but it had to be done. we discussed his emotions and tossed out discriptors till we could take no more of that session.   he said he wanted to write about it and share it so all could see.

i was not at all comfortable with this idea, though as always i whole heartedly and with zealousness support whatever he wishes to say, and how.  it was just the thought of the overall discomfort and challenge which scared me a bit.  i did not look forward to dragging him through the process of a writing of this nature, causing him to feel so wholly the darkess in all its rage.   i did not like to feel scott feeling such a  heaviness.  scott is, more than you can know, very very precious to me.  he's my shade tree. 

i let a week go by for him to toy with how he wanted to share these things, partly hoping i could cheer him enough for him not to want to write them anymore, i confess.  but next check in he was still passionate and of deep convictions, so we proceeded.   then we spent time tossing out analogies and comparrisons  selecting the ones he wanted.   elaborating on the ones he wanted.  he wanted it to rhyme.  i couldnt get it to rhyme and still carry the weight of it.  finally we had a final draft and he fell in love with each word. it was important to him to be read very slowly so the words would sink in.   scott felt this writing to his core, to every cell, every fiber of his being.   

after he was ready to  post it, and told me where and how, we covered the balance of it all, or tossed it out to be sure we both knew we both knew it.  the balance being this is one side of his coin.  its unrelenting.  it can not be consoled by cheap words which cant be responded to.  it is.  and it gnaws loudly.   the other side of the coin is that scott is extreamly loved and in very fortunate ways.  he is a special treasure to all who know him.  they adore him.  and rightly so.  he also has peers who prefer his company above all others, and he knows this.  his family put him on a throne.  rightly so again, and his mother has the most beautiful profound relationship with him a mother/son could have.   thats the other side.  we both knew then, that we both knew about that side too.  neither side negates the other.   

there was a wee bit of controversy after scott decided to post this.  he was given the opportunity to do so anonymously when he declined.   i addressed the controvery with the following;  anyone else in their 30's who wanted to write scuh a  poem would be permitted to, and not even questioned.  the same would hold true if they wanted to put it on the web.  we all have our dark moments and times. interestingly enough, when we share them, they not only help us but often help others.

scotts message needed to be said.  he did it very very well. i'm proud of his efforts and determination.   i think most people know the feeling of sitting with others and not feeling a part of them or connected in any way.  i learned new bits about isolation through all this.  ty scott for sharing    ty scott for being~ 

your lowly mascot
who adores you forever

Posted by group mascot on January 30, 2005 at 11:20 AM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

a summary on fridays sl event

as john shared a few entrees ago, there was an event on the live2give island last night.  the exchange and interest level of those attending was a surprise~  john opened it up to a free flow of questions and input of the group.  there were many who had added quite a bit.  you guys were great.
we made sure folk knew about both the live2give project and the brigadoon project, gave um a summary of what we did. and that we'd REALLY love to see others with disabilities and such come to sl!  like to see doors open for them, and would welcome them to join us!!
some of the folks who attended knew wilde or of them, some had no clue.  so i shared that they were currently a group of 9 adults who played a single character (av) as one.   that they had rather severe disabilities and had been blown away by the empowerment they've since experienced.  and how sl had led them to blogging.  they have a global presence, like going from rags to riches overnight for them.  they love to share, they want to share, with the world!
members of the group shared that friends and family had also experienced simular freedoms and inclusion.  each with their own stories on how they felt enriched from it.  it had become a place where the physical torments and insecurities are erased and playing fields were leveled.  even one example of a person without physical disability whose social disabilities were made null and void.
one person shared how they'd had a back injury and that being able to play had really made that time easier on them.  they could identify with how it kept you feeling connected and of value.
many asked if such virtual breakthroughs had real life fruit.  the answer was yes.  it was an overwhelming yes.  one guy said it so well, it WAS a part of real life.  at that point i wanted to distribute a piece of my rl presentation on just how many real life gains had been realized by wilde!  but i held back.  i dont have the groups okay to do that as of now.
there was a question line which wondered if such virtual experiences were not merely a crutch.  the discussion followed that all have crutches and insecurities, and that anything that moves us out from them was good. its okay for people to have different things work for them, as long as they are working.  they dont have to look the same as ours.
there was a discussion on how wilde was enjoying and directing the development of their island.  it was pointed out who had what jurisdiction, and why they chose that.  the crystal garden filled with notecards of wilde's writings was singled out as one example.  wilde has passionately and with a yearning to share sculpted that area.  sharing wisdom, humor, struggles, instructions, inspiration,etc.  they want them available to the world.  they are all contained on this blog under wilde's writings to the left.
we discussed possible interfaces to facilitate online usage for people with severe physical challenges, things that might be done.  this link was shared
it goes to a link on this site talking about biofeedback possibilities in sl. 
questions came up on methods to empower folks with severe speach problems to communicate more fluidly, and on body language.  there was much interest in the group during these topics.
some had been to the blog here and shared how they were touched.  some had linked it to their blogs  (=   some shared how specific writings by the group had moved them.  we shared how the feed back on the blog had been read and enjoyed by wilde.
there were many requests for meeting times with wilde in world.  hang out times.  where those who cared and wanted to tell them hello or maybe ask a question could.  john offered to help with hosting some events~   wilde will discuss ideas with john  this tuesday when he visits.   its their call~    and their choice of fun that matters (=
there were several wonderful contributors to the discussion.  one guy offered to try and help get rebuilt computers for others who might like to play sl and experience these same liberating things.  (=   we got his name~   ty  ty  ty    we sure hope all this opens up more opportunities for more peoples!  perhaps other day programs, clubs, or activity centers will follow suit.  we are quite happy to help, guide, or answer questions on this if your interested!  (=
it was pointed out that the sl community had had such a strong positive resonce and welcome for wilde.   that the inclusion by the residents, the whole hearted embrace if you would, had effected them and allowed for whole integration/inclusion and allowed wilde greater contribution and to more sources.
there was a discussion on how all people with disabilities just crave to be treated like everyone else. or be acknowledged as the same as everybody else.  how the virtual community empowers that better than the physical, and can do so quite dramatically.
there was good discussion on communication and emotional bandwidths, chat verses 3D world experiences, and how sl is a very good merge of both allowing for emotions better than other mediums out there.  it was more of a whole experience.
there was a loud request for wilde to put together something for the academics of the world to read.  its not the first time the ideas been voiced, but my responce was/is, for now we go slow and just lay a good foundation.   such things as that must be carefully looked at by all participants.  and its all very new to us.   
a good discussion was also held on the socialogical implications of persistant virtual communities.  many areas influenced were singled out and elaborated upon.  this was one of the many hotbeds of discussion.   
wilde had wanted to be at the meeting.  they cant come to evening events.  they read about it in the events schedule and in the blog and are very curious to find out its summary.  they said to tell the people at the event, and i did, that they were there in spirit.  they wish people could see what it all means to them and does for them.   
john moderated the 2 hour event very well.  it was the first of hopefully many empowering events.  again, if this makes a difference anywhere then we've reached our goal.   
wilde, ty guys for opening us up a bit. and for making your mark in the world.  its a very good mark!
the mascot

Posted by group mascot on January 29, 2005 at 05:56 PM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

fridays rush and welcome back charlene!

friday we shared many many thrills, what getting the new computer up, having it fly...   being able to go our own blog as a group with time enough to post live!!  woo hooo  we were able to jointly hang on the blogs and read, discuss and contribute.

john s  shared his perfect day here in the blog, not only with the world, but also aloud to his peers...  what an interesting thing for each of us to know...  what really means so much to those around them. part of johns composition was fine tuned there as he composed.  it was actually quite beautiful and definately a huge blast for us all!  john and i wondered what a book would read like which was called 'my perfect day'  and was filled with nothing but such stories!  (=

not only did we have a flying machine on a huuuuge new monitor- 21 inch-  FREEDOM !-    (=   , not only could we go to our blog and listen, celebrate...  we also got to post ourselves in the sl forums~  what a difference having a solid computer can make!  it was almost like having twice the time !   additionally (now with all this good how can there be an additionally?  good question  ) we got to spend time on our island.  yes!!   its really turning out so kewl for us--  and looks like for others too!  (whoda ever thunk it ?? )   so much to do, so little time.  but we were zipping through!  we could tp at will.  we could im without a calling card- which we needed to do!  many good sl things.  the crew hated to go... but at least there wasnt mutany this time~    heh

yes... still more....   we were able to compell charlene to come play with us again!  (she had a great time as we all knew she would!   we looooooove charlene!  i wont say much about her till shes more into it-- but she reaaaaally rocks!  she's just so wonderful and brings so much life to life.  i will say shes wicked smart, has a sharp witty side, and an infectious laugh!   we were soooo happy!   we teased her that she's being too stuck up to play with us- everyone laughed... and slowly slowly over the course of our play she began to get into it.  to taste it and see how rich and sweet it was.  omg world-  should charlene get turned lose on ya'll...  look out!  she'll ROCK the world!  heh~ 

it was so nice to have her with us, sharing all this.  having the computer with sweeter graphics i'm sure helped... wasnt as slow maybe or hard to follow.   whatever the reason we hope we have her hooked.  i cant help wondering what these new freedoms would bring to her... the good she'd realize from oh so many venues!  come... charlene.... come~   

friday was a sweet sweet day for the members of wilde.  the computer and the virtual community made so much possible for us.   it made for a very rich day.   heh, all that and they still had time to give me a hefty to-do list for them!   

point to ponder...  what if people like my dear friends all over the world were set free?

isnt this kewl?

Posted by group mascot on January 29, 2005 at 09:42 AM in Mascot's Musings | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack